Government Overspending Tab Hits $66.8 Billion over Decade; Outlook for Red Ink and Taxes Made Worse: C.D. Howe Institute

    TORONTO, April 28 /CNW/ - With total overspending by Canada's federal,
provincial and territorial governments over the past decade tallying an
eye-popping $66.8 billion, upcoming deficits are far larger than they would
have been if governments had stuck to their budget promises, according to a
study released today by the C.D. Howe Institute. "Governments would be
projecting less red ink, and Canadians would face lower tax burdens had
governments stuck to their budget spending promises," commented William B.P.
Robson, co-author of the report and President and CEO of the C.D. Howe
    In "Near Hits and Big Misses: Canada's 2009 Fiscal Accountability
Rankings," Robson and Policy Analyst Colin Busby rank governments on how well
their spending promises at budget time predict actual spending by the end of
each fiscal year. While some governments, such as Quebec, have tended to come
close to their targets, others, such as Alberta and Saskatchewan, have not,
and the overall national picture is one of persistent spending overruns, often
fuelled by better-than-expected revenues.
    In exploring how legislators and voters might better hold governments to
account in the future, this year's installment also looks at reporting
procedures: whether each jurisdiction's public accounts clearly present
budget-consistent figures, if they clearly explain deviations, if the relevant
auditor has given the accounts a clean bill of health, and how timely the
reporting is.
    For the study click HERE.

For further information:

For further information: William B.P. Robson, President and CEO, or
Colin Busby, Policy Analyst, C.D. Howe Institute, (416) 865-1904,

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